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We Are Not Blind!

Posted on February 11, 2024

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We Are Not Blind!

2 Kings 2:1-12

Psalm 50:1-6

2 Corinthians 4:3-6

Mark 9:2-9

Do you find it frustrating sometimes when people do not see things the way that you do? There might be something that you know without a shadow of a doubt that something is true but there will still be some stubborn person who will not see it as truth. For example, I may know without a shadow of a doubt that Jesus is the Son of God. That he died on a cross and that he rose again three days later. I may know that Jesus paid for my sins with his death. I may know that God spoke the universe, the earth, and everything in it in 6 days because he has the power to do so. However, there are still people in this world who can hear all of this and call it nonsense. They would argue that it is more logical for everything to come together on its own after a big explosion and everything just came to be through long periods of small transitions. They even try to recreate the possibility of this through experimentation to prove their theory and yet fail to realize that if they ever really succeed in their experiments, it is still a result of they themselves creating the experiment to bring these things together. All of this is utter nonsense and it is so frustrating when people just will not see the truth. Yet before I came to believe in Jesus Christ and God as our creator I was just as blind as these stubborn people. I was one of them.

In our reading from Paul’s letter to the Corinthians we see that Paul too would run into people who would be blind to the Gospel message. Paul says that even if the good news is hidden and covered it is hidden only from those who are perishing. “The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers…” Who is the god of this age? It is the fallen one, it is Satan who rules over this world of sin, doing the evil that he pleases in order to lead people astray. He blocks out the light so that unbelievers cannot see the image of God, which is the glory of Christ. This is why it can be so frustrating. They cannot see because they are blinded by the god of this age. Paul also explains that he and all of the other true apostles of Christ do not preach a message of themselves as Lord but Jesus as Lord. Paul is not a cult leader. However, there are those out in the world who are false apostles and false preachers who preach a different Jesus. There are those who preach themselves as having, being, and speaking the Word of God. These are again more in the world who lead people astray. Paul instead preaches that he is nothing. Christ is the center of focus not the preacher. Paul is just a servant messenger.

Now let us contrast the non believer with the believer. Our Gospel passage is found in Mark 9:2-9. Mark tells us that Jesus takes Peter, James, and John with him up onto a high mountain. Jesus takes them there for a reason. One of the reasons is that they would be all alone, no other witnesses up there for not everyone chooses to go up a mountain. When they for sure all alone they suddenly see Jesus transfigured into something else. They are seeing Jesus appearing in his true image of glory and with him is Moses and Elijah. These two characters that are appearing is significant as they both run parallel with each other. In our opening scripture we read about Elijah being taken up to heaven in a whirlwind. Before that happens, he makes a trip that day and travels through some specific areas. He and Elisha who refuses to leave his side, start at Gilgal which is near the Jordan and they travel to Bethel. Next, they travel to Jericho, and then finally the Lord sends them to the Jordan where the Israelites crossed to take over Jericho when they were entering the promised land. This is significant as God told Moses that he would raise up a prophet like him and it seems that this relationship between Elijah and Elisha is much like the relationship between Moses and Joshua. After Moses dies Joshua leads the Israelites across the Jordan to concur Jericho and they then travel to Bethel and then to Gilgal. Elijah and Elisha make this same journey backwards and start at the beginning where Moses and Joshua part ways so do Elijah and Elisha.

Before Elijah is taken up to heaven, he asks Elisha what he can do for him before he leaves. Elisha asks to inherit a double portion of his spiritual powers. Elijah explains that this is a difficult thing because it is not up to him to give this to him for spiritual power that Elijah possesses comes from God and only God can give what Elisha asks for if he so chooses to do so. Therefore, Elijah gives Elisha a sign to confirm whether God has allowed this to happen or not. If Elisha can see Elijah being taken up then God has granted his request. As we read Elisha does see that a Chariot of fire comes down from heaven and finally separates the two and Elijah is taken up in a whirlwind. Elisha is not blinded because he believes.

Now back to Peter, James, and John on the mountain. They see Jesus in all of his true image of glory and see him speaking with Moses and Elijah. These men can see because they believe. I ponder to think that if they had not first believed then they would not have seen. Peter not really understanding what is happening asks to build a shelter for the three of these beings that he sees. Then they are able to hear the Father speak that this is his son and he commands them to listen to him. Suddenly, everything appears back to normal and they are told not to say anything until the appointed time. I assume it is because people would not be able to see and through their words because they would not yet believe. They would be blinded.

Notice in these two accounts this morning that those who believe are not blinded from the truth. We are here today to worship because we are not blind. We are not blind to the power of Jesus. We are not blind to how Jesus saves. We are not blind to how the universe came to be. We are not blind to how our lives once were before Jesus came into our hearts. We are not blind to how Jesus even heals today. And we are not blind to how Jesus will return again. We will not be blind to see him when he does. However, the unbeliever will be blind to his power, will be blind to how he transforms others, will be blind to his coming. Those of us who believe will disappear before their eyes and they will be blind to see why. Yes, it can be frustrating to see such blind people in the world that choose evil over good and choose an eternal death over eternal life. However, when you get frustrated just remember that you can empathize with them because once you were also blind but now you see.